What's in Your Eye Shadow?

The right formula blurs fine lines and makes your skin glow. Plus, your eye color will suddenly look wow.

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Here's what you should know about your eye shadow.

Basics Ingredients

  • Binders help the product stay put on your constantly moving eyelids. The most common are forms of zinc and magnesium.
  • Enhancers make shadow feel silky smooth and let it go on evenly so you can avoid creasing — that stripy look. On the label they go by names including silica, nylon, and dimethicone.
  • Preservatives keep bacteria at bay — which is especially important because shadow is so close to your eyes. (They're often listed on the label as glycol or phenoxyethanol.)

Got Little Lines

Satin and matte shadows work best; glittery ones highlight wrinkles. If you want a little shine (without looking teenybopper-ish), try one with dimethicone copolymer, which has light-reflecting properties and a blurring, smoothing effect that downplays crepeyness. Also, keep shadow on the center of your lid instead of in the crease. But if hooded lids are your issue, use the crease to your advantage: Apply a darker shadow there and a lighter one on the lid to minimize sagging and add depth.

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Liquid vs. Powder

Liquids and creams are wax or oil based and last longer. (Moist ingredients stick well to skin.) But if you're oily, try powder. It won't collect in the crease or tiny lines.

What You're Paying For

Drugstore brands and pricier products typically have the same ingredients, but the more expensive versions tend to contain a higher concentration of the stuff that gives each shadow its color, long wear, and smooth feel.

Pick Your Power Shade

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Brown Eyes: Try burgundy for a flattering, smoky contrast.

Blue Eyes: Bronze warms up cool blue and works on any skin tone.

Green Eyes: Purple looks pretty on everyone, but makes green pop.

Hazel Eyes: Khaki brings out all the brown, green, and gold flecks.

This story originally appeared in the June 2016 issue of Dr. Oz The Good Life.

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